History Will Call Him Snidley Becklash
Glenn Beck is turning out to be an embarrassment to conservatives! It’s unimaginable! It’s inconceivable! WHAT KIND OF FREAKISH CLAIRVOYANT COULD HAVE FORESEEN THIS?
On my tombstone, I should put a long list of stuff I predicted publicly, to responses of catcalls and sneers. I said Pajamas Media would amount to nothing, and it would divide the Blogosphere. I said Arnold Schwarzenegger would turn out to be a black eye for the GOP. And I said Glenn Beck would turn out to be a major embarrassment.
Everyone said I was an idiot. Maybe I was, but 1) that’s irrelevant, 2) I was still right, and 3) all the loyal, right-thinking, team-spirit-oozing sheep were wrong.
Beck is plagiarizing, on a grand scale, as policy. He is earning millions, partly off of other people’s work, and he is actually having his staff exert extra effort to CONCEAL sources.
What on earth is wrong with him? Who even thinks like that? How can a person be that petty? It’s like a cheap soap opera villain. It’s so venal, its hard to believe it’s not fiction. It’s like someone modified his genes using material from Erica on All my Children.
The story I linked says Beck took a video shot by a blogger and EDITED OUT THE WATERMARK. Geez. Isn’t life hard enough for bloggers without conservative pundits actively sabotaging their work? We struggle to succeed, and we do the media’s work for them, and we fully accept the fact that we will not get the fame and money we deserve. We know they won’t help us (unless we look good in tight sweaters and have no original thoughts). But we don’t expect them to make a special effort to keep us in the dirt! This is like LeBron James, holding ghetto kids at gunpoint and stealing their basketballs. Earth to the famous: “succeed” just means “to do well”; you are not also required to prevent others from making it.
Neglect used to be considered sufficient. Now they’re proactively cheating us. What’s next? Are Bill O’Reilly and Roger Ailes going to go house to house, shooting bloggers in their beds? “Here’s a hollowpoint to the sternum, and then I’ll give you the last word.”
I am reminded of the movie Coma, where they gave people brain damage and then hung them up in a big warehouse, on life support, while they whittled parts out of them and sold them on the black market. I’m not saying bloggers have brain damage (I prefer not to address the issue), but even without that, the parallel is pretty accurate.
Honest to God, what’s the use of trying? Twelve or thirteen years ago, the lamest writer imaginable could (and often did) become a recognized megahit Internet pundit. The gold rush was on; all you had to do was stake a claim. The little guy had a chance. Now corporations operate websites they pretend are blogs, and they suck up all the traffic, and Glenn Beck is bringing up the rear, making absolutely sure the media leaves crumbs much to small for the other Whos’ mouses.
I guess the Tea Partiers have replaced bloggers. We used to be the grassroots, but Fox and the conservative “haves” have blasted us with Roundup and replaced us with artificial turf, like Red Eye and Malkin. Much like Rachel Marsden, we have been escorted off the premises by security, and the locks have been changed behind us, and Glenn Beck is making sorties out of the Green Zone to steal what little eclat we have left. If you want attention now, you have to go stand at a rally holding an AR15 and carrying a stupid sign, and if you really want to be noticed, make sure it’s misspelled.
I hope I don’t sound angry. I’m cracking up as I write this. It’s a Giraudoux play brought to life. It’s like Ionesco having a waking dream on national TV. I left this nonsense behind a couple of years ago; even Tantalus eventually gets a clue. But I can’t help remarking on it.
One of the funny things about growing older is that you come to understand how base human nature is, and then you are sentenced to see your conclusions confirmed over and over and over and over. It’s unbelievable. People are so venal, you just can’t hold the understanding of it in your mind. It’s so incredible, your left hemisphere will try to explain it away. “He’s not going to do that. Real human beings aren’t that shallow and predictable. It’s like something a character from the Simpsons would do. It’s impossible. It’s two-dimensional. AND NOW HE’S DOING IT. OH YES, HE’S DOING IT. I SAW IT COMING, AND SMOKE IS STILL COMING OUT OF MY EARS.” I feel like one of those Star Trek characters who burst into flame when Spock whispered puzzles into their ears.
You know what George Santayana should have said? “Those who learn from history are doomed to watch a whole bunch of idiots repeat it.”
I do stupid things, too, but it’s still funny watching the true masters of idiocy. To paraphrase Ty Webb, I don’t want to shortchange myself. When it comes to idiocy, I’m no slouch. But Darth Maul stands up and salutes when the Emperor walks by.
I believe supernatural forces run the world, and when I look at inexplicable successes like Glenn Beck, Obama’s Nobel, and Cher and Marissa Tomei’s Oscars, I assume they’re in play. They can make you succeed when you should fail, and they can keep you on top when you should go down in flames. Look at Qaddafi. So I won’t predict that Beck will take a huge career hit. But he should. Ordinarily, this would put an end to any career in journalism or academia.
I’m sure–I don’t have to check–that the success-worshiping sheep of the right wing are already defending Beck. We love circling the wagons and going down with the ship. Anyone who has made it must be God’s anointed. Anyone who criticizes deserves the same kind of treatment the herd gave famous malcontents and critics of the past. People like Socrates and Jesus. Troublemakers.
Mindlessly defend prominent conservative. Press lever. Receive food pellet. That’s how it works.
Here’s a prediction. Beck will get in trouble, but not as much trouble as Don Imus. Conservatives will all look like idiots, but not enough of them will care, so there will be no massive “Becklash.” Beck will be damaged, and he will never be quite as prominent as he is now, but he will still be a big player, and people will call his show (if he takes calls) and tell him he got in trouble because he was just too wonderful for this world.
And if his career gets in real trouble, maybe he’ll make another video about how he was almost killed by his hemorrhoids. I still can’t get over that.Stumble it! Save This Page